To the Editor:
OK, here we go. Schools are now getting over 0.54 cents of every dollar I pay taxes on in this city. I don’t go to school anymore, I am 55 years old. I don’t have children in school. So… why am I paying these outrageous taxes for school? Oops, I forgot, how silly am I? The teachers, police and firemen of Warwick have one of the best compensation and retirement packages in the United States. Warwick teachers are among the Top Ten highest paid teachers in the country! Click here for details: http://www.teachersalaryinfo.com/average-teacher-salary-rhode-island.html
Where else can you work for nine months out of the year, get 90 days sick leave on top of paid school vacations, holidays and not to mention snow days when a single inch of snow cripples the system? Shall we visit insurance co-pays, oh sorry, do you have to pay a 20 percent co-pay now? Teachers, look out at your classrooms. I would wage my paycheck that half of your students do not even have health care! Never mind the rest of us who accept co-pays as a fact of life.
Over the last decade, Warwick has become a dirty, littered and unkempt eyesore. The sewer grates are clogged and full of debris, sand everywhere from last winters’ storms (it’s August, right?) and let’s not ignore the sunken sewer covers, strategically placed where you have to drive. A true Warwick (ite) knows where they are but you may appear to be drunk driving as you try to avoid them and make your way down any Warwick thoroughfare. Don’t hit one, you will need your car lined up after! One of the worst I know is Post Rd. and Lincoln Ave. Shall we take a ride Mayor? We’ll take your car.
What about Narragansett Parkway, my neighborhood? Does someone special live over here Scottie? Since the Gaspee Parade in June, the street sweeping crew has come by five times. Maybe there is a special “someone” that we don’t know about living over here? OK, there I go again. How silly of me, it must be a teacher. What other reason could explain this sudden interest to keep the Parkway clean?
Avedisian does not have to raise taxes at all. He just needs to man-up if that is possible, obviously not. How about paying more attention to your very own city staff? Bought and paid for with my tax dollars! It took 4 city “workers” (and I really use that term lightly) a total of 3 visits and 5 phone calls to fix one manhole cover. I also watched one of them smoke 6 cigarettes while working, or to be more precise, shovel leaning. It gives me a warm feeling just knowing that my 54% tax rate will be paying for this bum’s lung cancer in probably just a few short years. Want names? Call me. My neighbors will also verify this, willingly! These are the same guys that were doing their banking one day on my tax time dollar. One of whom told me “I do it all the time”, direct quote! Oh, please Mayor, call me for details!
How about these special city people paying their way like the rest of us? Are they getting 40 hour paychecks? How much was their raise this year? I got 0.28 cents. What did you get? They smoke on the job, I can’t (besides I quit, smoking KILLS.) I can’t run personal errands on company time, can you? Of course you can, you work for the city.
Let’s put some of Warwick’s “finest" (when they’re not on their cell phones while driving) at major known traffic violation locations. Locations that would bring in so much revenue for the city. These spots are nothing more than STOP signs. Last I heard a STOP sign violation cost approximately $70. So, put a cop at both ends of Pilgrim Parkway/Fairfax Drive and Fairfax Apartments and let’s do the math. As soon as the officer completed writing one ticket, he/she could write the next. No shortage of STOP sign offenders at this intersection.
Basic arithmetic proves 6 tickets/hour, 48 tickets per shift, equals about $3,360 for one cop at one intersection for one day. Simple you say? Foolish? We can’t afford to put a policeman there all day. I say, you can’t afford not to put a cop there or any other place known for laxity of traffic violation enforcement (Narragansett Parkway and Warwick Ave.) I really want to know why this obvious source of revenue is ignored. This would certainly generate sizable incomes for your coffers, maybe even enough left over to paint that special house on the Parkway. Extra monies to fix this Hee Haw town. But as long as Scottie sits behind his desk and does not take phone calls, we can look forward to more term(s) of taxpayer abuse and infrastructure rot. Which reminds me, have you seen the exposed rebar on the Toll Gate Road/95 overpass? I say a Hail Mary every time I pass under this deteriorating structural nightmare. Scottie, do you know the phone number of the federal and state highway? Let’s move on this before we join the victims whose interstate bridge collapsed underneath them and they drowned when their cars went into the river, http;www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article2007/08/01AR2007080102072.html.
Last but not least, I am wondering why taxes were not charged for fireworks. Another opportunity to make some money for the city. Yeah, let’s sell the very thing that blinds and mutilates unsupervised children and stupid adults and sell it tax-free.
I really could go on and on. Unfortunately, no one wants to run for Mayor...who would? Who could clean up your mess? At this point, I am not sure if anyone can fix this disaster. To bring this city back will take a real man with true grit. Not a waving parade marcher who cares too little of our future, only for the teacher down the street.
Should have been a teacher,
Gail A. Stanton
A lifelong resident of Warwick (soon to be leaving for Phoenix, Ariz., where property taxes are affordable and the life style is pot-hole free.)